Rhizobox / root box systems of different designs are used to i) separate rhizosphere soil from bulk soil, ii) are a feasible ways to study different aspects of soil–root interactions, iii) to measure root growth, turnover and depth distribution and iv) to sample defined root types (e.g. age classes, orders). The flat surfaces allow for space optimized placement (e.g. important in growth chambers) and easy picture acquisition by standard or customised flat bed scanners. Rhizobox images can be analysed with free or commercial software programs (see bottom of page), however, rhizoboxes are also an educative way to illustrate both root and shoot growth to younger students ("root viewer").
Rhizobox imaging. We are currently in the final phase of developing a scanner system for large rhizoboxes not fitting commercially available scanners (A4, A3). This is foreseen to solve stitching or reflection problems as common with camera-based imaging (see image on the left) and to increase the user friendliness, repeatability and interpretability (especially in regard to segmentation). Stay tuned.
Please check the Plant Image Analysis Webpage (carefully collected by Guillaume Lobet and colleagues) for further software packages allowing root analysis.
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